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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E2r p67]

In victoriam dolo partam.

On victory won by guile

EMBLEMA XLVIII.

Aiacis tumulum lacrymis ego perluo Virtus,
Heu misera albentes dilacerata comas!
Scilicet hoc restabat adhuc, ut iudice Graeco[1]
Vincerer: & caussa stet potiore dolus.[2]

I, Virtue, bedew with tears the tomb of Ajax, tearing, alas, in my grief my whitening hairs. This was all it needed - that I should be worsted with a Greek as judge, and that guile should appear to have the better cause.

Notes:

1.  The Greek assembly awarded the arms of the dead Achilles to the cunning and eloquent Ulysses, not the brave and straight-forward Ajax. For Ajax’ subsequent suicide, see [A91a028].

2.  See Anthologia graeca 7.145.


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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [A6r]

AMICITIA ETIAM POST MOR-
TEM DURANS.[1]

Friendship lasting even beyond death

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [A6v]

Arentem senio, nudam quoque frontibus [=frondibus] ulmum,
Complexa est viridi vitis opaca coma.[2]
Agnoscitque vices naturae & grata parenti.
Officii reddit mutua iura suo.
Exemploque monet, tales non [=nos] quaerere amicos,
Quos neque disiungat foedere summa dies.

A vine shady with green foliage embraced an elm tree that was dried up with age and bare of leaves. The vine recognises the changes wrought by nature and, ever grateful, renders to the one that reared it the duty it owes in return. By the example it offers, the vine tells us to seek friends of such a sort that not even our final day will uncouple them from the bond of friendship.

Notes:

1.  See Erasmus’ famous variations on this theme in De copia (CWE 24. pp. 354-64).

2.  In ancient Italy young vines were often supported by elm trees. See Vergil, Georgics 1.2.


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